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When is Spousal Support or Alimony Awarded in Texas?

A Texas Court may only award alimony or spousal maintenance when (1) the spouse from whom maintenance is requested is convicted of a criminal offense that constitutes an act of family violence within 2 years of the filing for divorce or while the suit is ending; or when (2) the couple was married for 10 or more years, and the spouse seeking maintenance lacks sufficient property to provide for his or her reasonable needs and the spouse seeking maintenance is unable to support himself or herself because of an incapaciting disability or because the spouse is the guardian of a child of the marriage who requires substantial care and personal supervision because of a disability, or because the spouse clearly lacks the earning ability to meet his or her reasonable needs.

In determining the amount and extent of maintenance, the Court will consider all relevant factors including: (1)  the financial resources of the spouse seeking maintenance; (2)  the education and employment skills of the spouses, the time necessary to acquire sufficient education or training to enable the spouse seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment, the availability of that education or training, and the feasibility of that education or training;(3)  the duration of the marriage;

(4)  the age, employment history, earning ability, and physical and emotional condition of the spouse seeking maintenance; (5)  the ability of the spouse from whom maintenance is requested to meet that spouse's personal needs and to provide periodic child support payments, if applicable, while meeting the personal needs of the spouse seeking maintenance;(6)  acts by either spouse resulting in excessive or abnormal expenditures or destruction, concealment, or fraudulent disposition of community property, joint tenancy, or other property held in common;(7)  the comparative financial resources of the spouses, including medical, retirement, insurance, or other benefits, and the separate property of each spouse; (8)  the contribution by one spouse to the education, training, or increased earning power of the other spouse; (9)  the property brought to the marriage by either spouse;(10)  the contribution of a spouse as homemaker;(11)  marital misconduct of the spouse seeking maintenance; and (12)  the efforts of the spouse seeking maintenance to pursue available employment counseling.


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